Leg Workout Routines and Quad Development Targeting

Free Leg Workout Routines

To blast your quads and increase strength and size. Includes how to target inner and outer Quad Muscles, Training Tips and a Leg Exercise Guide with proper form descriptions and targeting information.

Includes a detailed guide on Leg Extension Modifications to target the Outer (Vastus Medialis), Inner (Vastus Lateralis) and the Upper/Middle (Rectus Femoris) muscles.

So read on, try out some of these workouts and variations then send us your feedback in the comments!

Leg Workout

  • Hack Squats – Warm up then 4 sets 6-10 reps
  • Lunges – (Barbell behind the neck resting on shoulders or holding dumbbells by your hips using one leg at a time) – 5 sets 8-10 reps
  • Leg Extensions – (Extend, fully flex and hold for a brief second at the peakā€¦ then do the negative slowly) 5 sets 8-12 reps

Leg Workout #2

  • Warm up with 2 sets of Single Leg, Leg Extensions
  • Leg Press – Warm up then 4 sets 6-10 or up to 12 reps
  • Smith Machine Squats – Warm up then 3 or 4 sets 6-12 reps
  • Leg Extensions – 3 or 4 sets heavy for 8-12 reps

Paco Bautista’s Leg Workout

  • Leg Extensions – 5 sets 6-20 reps
  • superset with Leg Curls – 5 sets 6-20 reps
  • Squats – 5 sets 6-20 reps
  • Leg Presses – 5 sets 15-20 reps
  • Stiff Legged Dead Lifts – 5 sets 15-20 reps

Tarek Elsetouhi’s Quad Routine

  • Leg Extensions – 4 sets 10 reps
  • Squats – 6 sets 10-6 reps
  • Leg Presses – 4 sets 20-8 reps

Leg Workout Routine for Strength

  • Squats – warm up then 4 sets 6-10 reps
  • Leg press / leg press machine – 5 sets 6-10 reps
  • Leg extensions – 5 sets 8-12 reps (optional – on last set perform a stripping set)

Leg Workout Routine for Growth

  • Hack squats – warm up then 4 sets 6-10 reps
  • Lunges (barbell behind the neck or holding dumbbells) – 5 sets 8-10 reps
  • Leg extensions – 5 sets 8-12 reps

Quad Blast Workout

  • Warm up with 2 sets of single leg, leg extensions
  • Leg press – Warm up then 4 sets 6-10 or 12 reps
  • Squat machine – warm up then 3 or 4 sets 6-12 reps
  • Leg extension – 3 or 4 sets heavy 8-12 reps

Dennis James’ Leg Workout

  • *Leg extensions – 4 sets 8-12 reps
  • Squats – 4 sets 8-12 reps
  • Leg presses – 4 sets 8-12 reps
  • Leg extensions – 4 sets 8-12 reps
  • *warm up set first

Other Leg / Quad / Thigh exercises

  • Front squats
  • Machine squats
  • Heavy half squats
  • Leg Exercises – Proper form and exercise descriptions

Outer and Inner Quads Targeting

Pointing your Toes inward focuses on the outer quads muscles, point your toes outwards to focus on the inner quads muscles. Also keep your feet under your hips on leg presses, squats and smith machine squats to less target the glutes and focus more on the quads overall development. Taking a Narrow Stance puts more emphasis on the outer quads and the opposite (a wider stance) will focus more on the inner thigh muscles.

Leg Training Tips

Full range of motion must be emphasized here, not weight. While doing any type of squats your quads should be parallel to the floor. Leg presses should be performed until your legs are parallel to foot platform. Leg extensions should be performed to a brief full lockout and contraction at the top of the exercise. Squats and Leg presses should briefly lockout or just short of at the top of the exercise also.

Leg Exercises for the Thigh / Quads

The Primary Leg Exercises you can do are Squats, Leg Presses, Hack Squats and Leg Extensions.


Purpose of Squats is to Develop Mass and Strength for the Legs especially the Quad Muscles

Proper form for Squats

Stand under the bar (sometimes wrap a towel around the bar to lessen the pain from the barbell on your traps) lift it off with your shoulders step away with feet approximately shoulder width apart toes pointing slightly out. With your back straight, head forward, bend your knees until your thighs are parallel to the floor or slightly lower and then push yourself back up to the starting position.

Points to Remember for the Squats Exercise

This exercise has a very high level of difficulty as it is very easy to use improper form and injure yourself

Use a Weight Belt for added lower back support

Wrap your knees to help prevent injury

There are some variations including Dumbbell Squats, Smith Machine Squats and Front Squats (barbell resting across your front delts and arms)

Leg Presses

Purpose of Leg Presses is to Develop Mass and Strength for the Quads

Proper form for Leg Presses

Place your feet about shoulder width apart or slightly wider when under the machine, lower the weight and keep your lower back pressed against the seat, do not let your lower back raise off the seat as you get towards the lower part of the rep. As you get towards the lower part of your rep you want to form a 90 degree angle with your legs then push back up to the top, do not lock out your knees and let all the weight rest on your joints, go straight back down very controlled for your next rep.

Tips to Remember

Keep your hands on the handles and do not cross your arms across your chest especially because it limits your range of motion

Do not Push on your Knees as this would obviously be too heavy if you need to.

Leg Extensions and Outer / Inner / Upper / Middle Development

Purpose of Leg Extensions is for Definition and Shape

Proper form for Leg Extensions

Sit in the machine and place your feet under the padded bar, extend your legs out as far as possible to the locked position flexing as hard as you can for a brief second, make sure your glutes stay planted on the seat also. Slowly lower to the starting position and repeat.

Leg Extensions can be Modified to target the Outer (Vastus Medialis), Inner (Vastus Lateralis) and the Upper/Middle (Rectus Femoris) muscles.

Leg Training – Targeted Leg Extension Exercises

There are ways to target your outer, inner and upper / middle Quadriceps muscles. The first we will talk about is the Teardrop Muscle the Vastus Medialis

Exercise for the Vastus Medialis

This is known as the Teardrop Muscle in your Thighs, the Inner Quadriceps Muscle. Point your toes out at about a 45 Degree angle while performing Leg Extensions. This places more emphasis on the Vastus Medialis and helps to define and target this quadriceps muscle.

To place more emphasis on the Outer Quadriceps

During Leg Extensions point your toes inward at about a 60 degree angle from the floor. This will focus and place more tension on your outer Quads called the Vastus Lateralis.

Inner Quadriceps Muscle Training

Perform Leg Extensions with your toes pointed straight up. This Leg Muscle is called the Rectus Femoris, the higher quad muscle in the middle of your thighs.

Build these Targeted Leg Extension Tips into your routine for Fuller more Defined Quads.

Other Leg Exercises include Hack Squats and Lunges.

Check back often and incorporate these Leg Training Tips and Quad Workouts into your routine next time your in the gym!